Slaughter ’80 resigns and leaves for State Department
Slaughter, who has been dean of the Wilson School since September 2002, sent an e-mail to Wilson School students on Jan. 20 informing them that she would be resigning in order to work under Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. The University officially announced the move one week later and confirmed that acting associate dean Mark Watson would serve as interim dean.
President Tilghman is expected to begin to search for Slaughter’s replacement in the next few weeks.
Slaughter will remain a member of the faculty while working in Washington. She plans to commute to Princeton on weekends, according to her e-mail. Slaughter’s husband, politics and Wilson School professor Andrew Moravcsik, will remain a full- time faculty member.
“[Clinton] commented that it would be valuable for me to get out of Washington regularly, to be able to hear a wider range of opinions,” she wrote in the e-mail. “The one thing that everyone in the Woodrow Wilson School has in abundance is opinions!”
The office of policy planning provides policy analysis and advice on global trends to advance U.S. interests abroad. Slaughter will report directly to Clinton.
Slaughter will be the first woman to serve as the Director of Policy Planning, a position created in 1947 by George Kennan ’25.
She succeeds David Gordon, who took the job in 2007 and spent time prior to that teaching at Princeton.
“It goes without saying that we wish Anne-Marie well in the nation’s service in the Obama administration,” Tilghman said in the University statement. “We will eagerly welcome her back when her term is finished.”
Several faculty members praised the appointment, saying they believed it would be beneficial both to the future of U.S. policy planning and to the Wilson School’s national reputation.
Slaughter is “exactly the kind of enlightened internationalist the country needs,” Wilson School professor Stanley Katz said.
Wilson School associate dean Nolan McCarty noted that Slaughter is a good fit for the policy planning staff. “There is no one as good with connections or a network in the policy community as [Slaughter],” he said.
In a post about Slaughter’s appointment on his New York Times blog, Wilson School professor Paul Krugman wrote, “I assume that means we’ll now actually have planned policy – what an innovation!”
Slaughter’s new position may also boost recognition of the University, said Wilson School Advisory Council member Lynn Ohman GS ’75. Ohman called Slaughter’s departure “a feather in Princeton’s cap.”
“I’m always impressed now that when I’m in Washington … people identify with the School, not just Princeton,” she said. “She has built its international program without sacrificing its domestic policy side … I can’t believe she has only been there six years.”
Slaughter has raised the profile of the Wilson School, Ohman said.
During her tenure as dean, Slaughter has expanded the Wilson School’s faculty by 16 tenure-track professors and helped establish the Niehaus Center for Globalization and Governance, the Policy Research Institute for the Region, Institutions for Fragile States and the Princeton-Harvard China and the World Program.
Katz said that “her first goal [as dean] was to rebuild the international [affairs] faculty of the school, and she did that very quickly and very well … We are now one of the best schools in the country in that field, perhaps the best.”
McCarty, who is on sabbatical until next fall, also praised Slaughter’s handling of the Robertson lawsuit, saying that she led the Wilson School through the litigation “without compromising the character of the school.”
He added that many of the initiatives she implemented will likely outlast her tenure. One such initiative is the Scholars in the Nation’s Service program, which, McCarty said, “is probably the one she is most proud of.”
McCarty will resume his position as associate dean when he returns from sabbatical.
In her e-mail, Slaughter thanked both Watson and McCarty for agreeing to serve as acting interim deans, but McCarty clarified that she was actually thanking him for his service as associate dean.